NLC urges president, Congress to create jobs
In letters to President Obama and Congressional leadership, the Washington-based National League of Cities (NLC) is calling for the federal government to do more to create jobs quickly and stabilize local government budgets. The letters outline four strategies for improving local economies, which include funding for a public service employment program and a jobs package that prioritizes targeted infrastructure spending.
NLC also recommends that measures designed to improve access to credit be included in any jobs package. “Since the onset of the economic downturn, city leaders have been forced to make tough choices in an effort to provide desperately needed services and to drive their local economic engines while responding to large and often persistent budget shortfalls,” NLC President and Riverside, Calif., Mayor Ronald Loveridge wrote in the letters. “In the absence of additional federal intervention, a deepening local fiscal crisis could hobble the nation’s incipient recovery with more layoffs, furloughs, cancelled infrastructure projects and reduced services.”
The public service employment program suggested in the letters would provide immediate employment to jobless residents through community improvement projects with clear public benefit, according to NLC. Also, infrastructure spending would create jobs while also laying the foundation for long-term benefits in communities. The infrastructure spending should focus on an expansion of existing programs to allow for local ingenuity and to get money into job creation quickly, the NLC letters say.
Read the full text of the letters.